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Home Care for the Elderly

 

More and more seniors are choosing the “aging in place” option instead of living in a nursing home or assisted living community. The improvements in technology, senior home care, and expertise provided by aging in place specialists makes staying at home a much more plausible solution for many seniors. A recent poll shows that over 80% of seniors desire to live out their days in the comfort of their own home instead of moving to a care facility. Many health care experts say that aging in place has several health benefits and may prolong life.

Medical experts cite the following benefits of aging at home:

· Home atmosphere provides emotional comfort
· The home provides a social center for family and friends
· Home ownership is a source of pride
· Having to care for a home provides purpose
· Protection from institutionally acquired illnesses
· Greater control over exposure to pathogens
· Prevention of relocation stress
· Increased self-esteem

It just makes sense for some seniors to stay at home because of the myriad of great services they can receive from the comfort of their own living rooms. Below we look at the different types of services provided:

Safety Assessment

Mitigating home hazards as well as making the home more senior friendly is a major factor for seniors who wish to stay home. Personnel who work at senior centers can come to a home and perform a safety and home modification assessment. They are professionally trained to spot common hazards and make recommendations on how to eliminate those hazards. They can also provide suggestions on how to make to modify the home and make routine tasks more convenient. The most common modifications include:

· No step entry way
· Increased space in bathroom, kitchen, living area for wheelchair or walker
· Non-slip flooring
· Grab bars for tub, toilet, and bed
· Scald proof sinks in kitchen and bathroom

Personal Care

Personal care includes bathing, getting dressed, and medication reminders. Personal care workers help clients meet their personal basic needs.

Household Chores

Many seniors are more than able to live at home but need just a little help keeping up with household duties such as yard work, grocery shopping, bill paying, cleaning, and laundry. This type of non-medical care can make all the difference between a senior being able to stay at home or having to move to a home.

Transportation

In a recent poll seniors cited transportation as one of the biggest problems. Most seniors cannot afford to take a taxi and do not feel comfortable using city buses. Senior centers that provide transportation services to their residents can also provide transportation services for aging in place clients.

Geriatric care managers

These are highly trained professionals who work with seniors to develop long term health care and life plans. They often have backgrounds in social work, nursing, and senior care. One of their biggest functions is to refer seniors to the right people or agencies that can successfully meet their needs. Geriatric care managers are sometimes referred to as senior care managers.

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. 8/10/11

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